In Conversation with Ayesha Toor An Exceptional Artiste

There’s something about the fierce and artistically blessed Ayesha Toor, no one can deny that she’s a powerhouse of talent. She’s the sort who’ll sparkle even in a two-minute role. She’ll engross you with her histrionics on the screen. She entered the glitzy world of entertainment with a drama called Funters. But it was only after Ayesha did a video for the song Behti Naar, directed by Saqib Malik for the band Rushk, which proved to be her shot of fame and she eventually started getting more offers. She is a multifaceted actress who is also into anchoring and modelling.

Being an artiste of many genres, she thoroughly enjoys acting more and is an established name in the industry today. Ayesha soon discovered her creative streak which also extended to performing arts and took it up as a serious profession. She isn’t averse to taking risk in picking up unconventional characters as long as it indulges her creative cravings. She’s always spoken her mind and is known for her bold stance. Excerpts from a rollicking interview with the feisty actress who is an uplifting woman and also has evolved as an actress big time:

How and when exactly did you realise you had the passion for acting?

I realised it, every time I get in to a project, otherwise I still don’t think I’m an actor, I feel like that when I get a script and I start rehearsing.

You’ve been involved in almost every aspect of being an artist, be it acting, modelling or hosting, which one do you like the most and why?

I like acting the most; it’s always interesting to see how a character feels things, and to mould myself according to that. I struggled with it, so I have to rehearse and I have to practice quite a bit to get in to or to understand the layers of the character written for me.

Tell us about the toughest part of your work? And why do you think it is tough for you?

Waiting. It makes me really nervous, when I get on the set and I shoot my first scene or shoot the first day, I finally get in to the character, but before that I’m always nervous and I’m always unsure whether I will be able to good job or not.

Every industry, including the entertainment industry, is full of competition; what do you do to stand out amidst competition?

I do nothing; I am okay with the competition.

What is the first thing you do to research when approaching towards a challenging role?

I think the dialect is very important to me, to know where the character is coming from, what do they think, why are they thinking the way they are thinking, what would be the human reaction? And I think the most important part is to separate myself or the way I speak from it, yet keeping a part of myself in the character, it’s a very paradoxical situation.

Out of all the characters that you’ve played in the past, which one is your most favourite?

I like all of them, for the time being when I’m doing it I like the process, I enjoy it, and I end up enjoying the character as well.

Who do you consider to be your acting role model whose career you would like to emulate, and why?

Irsa Ghazal, she is one my favourite actors. There is so much gravity in that woman. She can portray any charcter and be totally convincing. And as far her career path is concerned, to be honest she was at the peak of her career when she left for Canada; where she lived her life and then came back and it gave her so much more depth then she had when she was younger. You have to live life a little bit to be able to become an artist and I didn’t find any hunger or greed in her to be number one or to be in forefront or to be famous. She is very honest to her CRAFT and still is and I loved working with her.

You are known for portraying strong headed and intense characters; how do you feel when you hear people appreciating your work?

I feel great; initially, I would get really confused about how I should react to any kind of praise where my work is concerned. Now, I have learnt to appreciate what I do myself and I've gotten better with receiving compliments.

You are a creative person; how has creativity impacted your life?

I think it shaped my life, its “I am the way I am” because of my aesthetics or the kind of art I have grown up with.

Do you think the industry gives importance to the beauty standards that prevail heavily in our society? Have you ever faced any biasness throughout your acting journey?

In retrospect, I think the one thing I liked about myself was that I was always oblivious of what other people think of me or that’s what I think that I was oblivious to them. As far as beauty standards are concerned, I don’t think it’s only our industry, I think it’s the entertainment industries all over the world, where women after the age of 35 are considered old, everywhere in the world. If you look at Hollywood they follow the same pattern, it is biased and unfair also, I think women need to take a stand, instead of acting like they are forever young, they need to be older, wiser and more mature. It doesn’t mean that it strips them off from their femininity.

If someone is going to make your life into a movie, what genre would it be and who would you like to play you?

Umm… I don’t think that I would want anyone to make a movie on my life; I like my life to stay private.

With the growing pressure to have a social media presence nowadays, what do you do to tackle the pressure of being in the public eye no matter what? Also, have you come across any social media trolls and how do you deal with them?

I don’t have a lot of pressure to have a social media presence. I do cater to the public in some way or the other I guess but it’s really not a pressure. I am pretty comfortable with whatever I put on my Instagram.

Yes, I have come across social media trolls and I block and delete them. I think if all the celebrities who have a large following, if they feel trolled, they should block and delete these guys and they won't have access anymore and once you take away access, they will probably learn to behave.

What piece of advice would you want to suggest to the budding actors and artists out there?

I think the new artists and actors are pretty good at their job, they are good actors - they are professional. All the younger people I have worked with so far have been really phenomenal actually. The only advice I can give, perhaps, is for them to work on themselves in their personal lives as well, you know to educate themselves, learn more and to carry their personal lives with their professional lives simultaneously, not just become one dimensional.

• Coordination: Umer Mushtaq
• Hair & Makeup: Nabila Salon
• Designer: YBQ design Studio
• Jewellery: Esfir Jewels
• Photography & Styling: Ali Abbas Ansari